Azure keeps adding features and most of them first end up as preview features. After this beta phase they become general available. You’ll need to opt-in for the preview features.
I’ve signed up for the Billing Alert Service. After being queued for 9 days the feature showed up on the billing portal as an extra tab. Also got an e-mail about this, but only noticed it after setting up some alerts.
Clicking the tab gets me to the (preview) billing alerts. There I can create up to 5 alerts. The types of alerts are billing total or monetary credits. After creation you’ll get a confirmation e-mail on the address supplied.
When my total amount spent reaches the alert total I get notified. I created an alert to notify me whenever Azure is costing me money. This is when the bill is €0 or more.
With my Visual Studio Premium account I get some Azure credits each month. When these drop to the alert amount I get notified.
I tried to input €37.50 since this is the half of €75, but the alert service only accepts “positive whole numbers”. Who cares, but it’s a limitation.
The existing alerts are displayed in a list with the UTC time of the last notification sent.
To be notified at the beginning of a new billing period (and to have something to show here) I added a monetary credits alert for €76. This is €1 more than I’m entitled to with Visual Studio Premium. My first e-mail arrived within one hour after the alert was created.
By starting a heavy Virtual Machine (D4 = €0.948/hour) I managed to trigger another alert. (HalfWayCredits)
The frequency the alerts are checked isn’t clear to me, just keep in mind it could take up to 24 hours before you get notified.
Set up billing alerts post on azure.microsoft.com
How to Create an Azure Billing Alert Email post from march 2014, probably the first ever to use the alert service